Guest Author - Susan D. Bates
If you are a college student who is planning a trip home during a school break, you might be planning to visit with your high school friends while you are there. While it can be great to see old friends, there are important things to remember when visiting friends over break:
Remember to spend time with your family, too
Your family has missed you while you have been away at college. Schedule time to spend some time your family them as well as friends.
Be mindful of your friends' obligations
Just like you have obligations to spend time with your family members over the break, your friends have obligations too. Your friends who have also attended college will need to spend time with their families. Friends who have not left the area may have to work or have other obligations. Be understanding and respectful of their other commitments. Donít try to make your friends feel guilty or try to get them to ignore their obligations.
Donít be surprised if your friends have changed
As people leave high school and begin to mature, they often go through many changes. Some of these changes are long lasting, while others changes are temporary. For example, they may adopt new political or religious opinions or they may drastically change their style of dress. This often happens with college students as they are exposed to new people and learn more information. You may have changed, too. Get to know friends as they are now and use changes in friends as an opportunity to learn something new.
Donít just talk about old times
Sometimes friends who have not seen each other in a while donít know what to talk about. This is especially true if it seems that one or both of the friends have changed. It can be uncomfortable. To avoid the discomfort, they may spend all of their time talking about the things they have done in the past. However, the only way to maintain the friendship is to get to know each other as you both are now. Ask your friends questions to discover their new actives, interests, and opinions. Discuss how you each have formed your new interests and opinions. Listen to your friendsí current activities, interests, and opinions. If you are each respectful toward one another when discussing differences, you will be able to remain friends, even if you have great differences.
Donít put down friends who arenít in college
Some of your friends probably did not go to college. There could be many reasons they did not go to college. Be careful not to put them down for not going to college. If being around you is unpleasant, they probably will not want to spend time with you.
Spending time with old friends can be a lot of fun. But it is important to remember the points above to make the most out of your break and to have the most fun with your friends.